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The Journal notes:–

_December 5th_.–Parliament met. 9th, first dinner of the Club. 24th, to Ottershaw Park for Christmas. 28th, to Farnborough–last time. 29th, Mrs. Grote died. 31st, returned to town.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_December 13th_.–I brought up two volumes of the MS. Journals for you to read when you come to town. But I perceive the further you proceed the less can you publish. I dismiss all thoughts of that from my mind, and bequeath the task to posterity.

The debate in the Commons has been very dull, [Footnote: On a motion to condemn the policy of the Government in Afghanistan. It was defeated by a majority of 101 in a House of 555.] but the Government will have a very large majority. They tell me Dizzy is negotiating another little purchase of Seleucia and Scanderoon. Jerusalem is in the next lot.

I gave the ‘Secret du Roi’ to an Irishman to review, and the wretch has disappointed me. I am afraid it is now too late, or I would do it myself. [Footnote: It was reviewed in the April number (1879), but neither by Reeve nor the Irishman.] Read M. de Lomenie’s book, ‘Les Mirabeau’–a very amiable family.

_Rutland Gate, January 4th_, 1879.–This Christmas has been marked beyond all others by the most tragical events. To me, Mrs. Grote and Lord Tweeddale are deplorable losses, and I could add a catalogue of names of less note, besides those of public interest. What irony to call it the season of mirth and gaiety!

Mrs. Grote has very kindly left Hayward l,000£. I am glad of it, for it will make him more comfortable, and, I hope, less cross.

The Journal then has:–

_January 7th_.–Dined at Sir P. Shelley’s; Spedding, Browning.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_January 18th_.–I fully intended to come to see you to-day, and to bring you the MS. volumes of C. C. G.; but I am very lame with rheumatism in my knee, and the weather is so infernal that I cannot use the carriage, and I am afraid to make the expedition in a cab. I must therefore defer my call till I can move better. On such a day as this one can only burrow like the rabbits.

I think the Cenci article in the new ‘Ed. Rev.’ will interest you.

_January 22nd_.–I send you Vols. III. and IV. of the mystic record. Pray keep it locked up.

In the ‘True Tale of the Cenci,’ by T. Adolphus Trollope, there was much that Mr. Cheney dissented from, and he wrote a long letter on the subject, which Reeve in due course forwarded to Trollope. This led to a reply, with which, as far as Reeve’s correspondence shows, the discussion dropped. If it was continued further, it was without Reeve’s assistance.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_January 23rd_.–I saw Lady Shelley to-day, and, as I told her you could not call on her, she very obligingly said she would be happy to call on you and bring you the enlarged photograph of the poet to look at. These photographs are done on porcelain. There are only three copies of them, which Lady S. has got. The negative is destroyed. … She says the drawing is the image of Shelley’s sister, Helen Shelley.

_January 31st_.–Many thanks for your prompt return of the volumes. I am glad they have amused you, and you can give evidence that they are not very wicked. I am afraid I cannot supply any more until I have been down to Foxholes, as I find I have locked up part of the MS. there; and I must now have the whole of it bound.

_February 3rd_.–I send you Trelawny’s book on Shelley, and I also enclose an interesting letter from Mr. Trollope in answer to your remarks on the Cenci article. You will see he has taken pains with the subject. I did not mention your name to him in connexion with the remarks, but only with reference to the Philobiblon notes. He therefore does not know that you are as well acquainted with the Italians as he is.

_To Mr. Dempster_

_C. O., February 26th_.–I hope this will not arrive too late to congratulate you on having achieved in health and good spirits three-quarters of the road to our centenary. Unluckily, the last quarter is the most difficult. But _sursum corda_! When I look back and about me, I am astonished to have got so far. The great pleasure of advancing years is retrospection. One sees such groups and groups of pleasant people. The prospective eyes of youth see nothing so real or charming. I fancy I am sitting with you on a flowery bank of heather in the Highlands, about August 15th, talking of these things. There are a dozen brace of dead grouse in the bag. Donald is at the well. Don’t remind me that it is February, 1 in London, the wind in the northeast.

Here the Journal records:–

_February 27th_.–My sister-in-law, Helen Blackett, died at Matfen.

_March 4th_.–Charles Newton and Sir J. Hooker elected by The Club.

_April 28th_.–I was named Vice-President of the Society of Antiquaries for four years.

_From Lord Kimberley_

_35 Lowndes Square, May 3rd_.–There is a savage article in the ‘Quarterly’ (by Froude, I believe), many of the statements in which arise from mere ignorance. Whatever chance of success Carnarvon’s scheme of confederation had–it was in any case small–was destroyed by Froude’s blundering, which was caused mainly by his knowing nothing whatever about the political history and literature of the colony. But, for all that, his article is worthy of attention. Like you, I am very apprehensive about the Zulu war; but this is too long a story for a short note. I should very much like to talk the matter over with you.

The Journal again:–

_May 15th_.–Presided at Antiquaries as V.-P.

_June 11th_.–Great party at Count Münster’s for the golden wedding of Emperor Wilhelm.

_From Mr. E. Cheney_

_Audley Square, July 1st_.–I have an impression of Shelley’s portrait, which Colnaghi has just engraved. Sir Percy wishes it not to be re-copied, and he entertains no doubt of its authenticity. He says it is extremely like a maiden aunt of his–the only survivor of the past generation of the Shelleys. I beg your acceptance of an impression.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_July 1st_.–I am uncommonly obliged to you for the exquisite engraving of the drawing of Shelley. I shall cherish it alike in memory of him, and of a better man–yourself, and for the strange legend about it.

I am sorry to hear that —— has taken offence at the mention of her father in the ‘Greville Memoirs.’ I was wholly unconscious of the offence, and indeed had forgotten that he was mentioned in them at all…. I should like, with great simplicity, to say to these eminent persons that I value the honour of being the Editor of Charles Greville’s Journals infinitely more than any distinction that Queens or Duchesses could bestow on me. But I esteem the talents and good qualities of —— and certainly I never dreamed she was offended.

And then the Journal:–

_July 5th_.–Lady Waldegrave died. The news came while we were attending Lord Lawrence’s funeral in Westminster Abbey.

_26th_.–To Foxholes. _August 16th_.–Visit to Weymouth; 18th, drove to Abbotsbury.

_August 30th_.–Tom Longman died at Farnborough–seventy-five.

_September 3rd_.–His funeral.

_5th_.–To St. Malo with Christine and Hopie; 6th, to Dinard and on to Dinan; 8th, to Guingamp; 9th, to Lannion, seeing Chateau de Tonguebec on the way; 10th, to Louannec–fine rocky coast; 11th, Morlaix–drove to St. Pol de Léon; 12th, Brest, but it rained; 13th, to Auray; 14th, expedition to Carnac; 15th, expedition to Locmaria-quer; 16th, Auray to St. Malo; 18th, home again–a pleasant tour.

_24th_.–To Stratton, to see Lord Northbrook about article on Affghan War. Read him the article.

_October 21st_.–Lord Northbrook at Foxholes.

_30th_.–Left Foxholes. Visit to Pember’s [at Lymington], Beaulieu Abbey. To town on November 1st.

Frequent mention has been made of M. de Circourt’s letters, the writing of which occupied a great part of his time. In a short memoir, or, rather, an appreciation, which Reeve contributed to the ‘Edinburgh Review’ of October 1881, he wrote: ‘It was his pleasure and his desire to live and die comparatively unknown. With an insatiable curiosity and love of knowledge, with an extraordinary facility in mastering languages, and a universal love of literature; with a memory so precise and so inexhaustible that it retained without effort all he had acquired, he found in the mere exercise of these singular gifts a sufficient employment for a long and not inactive life…. He possessed and enjoyed the friendship of an extraordinary number of men of the highest distinction, not only in France, but in all lands. The correspondence he carried on with his friends in Germany, Italy, England, Switzerland, America, and Russia was inconceivably voluminous. To each of them he wrote in their own respective language, equally vehement and profuse in every tongue.’

The bulk of his letters to Reeve alone is truly formidable. But these, and presumably most others, were to a very great extent political or literary pamphlets, which, though not given to the press, were–there can be little doubt–intended to be circulated among a select public such as he delighted in addressing. Two of the latest of these, written very shortly before his death, are here given:–

_From M. de Circourt_

La Celle, October 27th.

My dear Reeve,–I don’t know whether the article ‘Germany since the Peace of Frankfort’ has done in Great Britain so much noise as the ‘Affghanistan,’ which has been, over here, an event in the literary-politic world. But the first one is quite equal to the second, and gives career to endless (alas! useless, too!) reflections. It is a sombre picture, quite in the style of Rembrandt, with a _chiaroscuro_ much akin to darkness. It can be objected that the lights are sacrificed to the shades. But, excepting the strong constitution of the Imperial army, and the perfection to which, according to competent judges, the preparations for an offensive and defensive war have been pushed, I cannot see anything, in the condition of finances, industry, husbandry, and, above all, public morals, which is not threatening, if not absolutely disheartening. No traveller comes back from Germany without a tale of woe. _Savior armis Luxuria incubuit, victamque ulciscitur Galliam_. And while the rancour and the thirst for vengeance are still, in France, what they were in 1871, the whole of power, riches, and fashion in Germany crowding to Paris, give it a sort of transient popularity, and suffers itself to be led by what is among us most frivolous, most immoral, and even less French, in the old and legitimate sense of that word. It is very curious to observe how the strangers flock to Paris in order to enjoy the spectacle of themselves, reckoning the French for nothing save the ministers of their pleasures, _et improbi turba impia vici_. If, in the midst of these brilliant saturnalia, the _pares_ were to rise, and another Commune spring from the kennel to the day, how many of the lords of the Philistines would be buried under the ruins of the temple of Dagon? But to revert to Germany, or, rather, to her ruler.

Prince Bismarck, I apprehend, has lived too long. He begins to feel the fickleness of fortune. He has never had any friends; he begins to be burdensome to his associates. I don’t know whether he could have managed a Parliament elected after the actual method on the Continent; I am certain that he did not, and never was able to, uphold a consistent and honourable system whatever. He is no financier, no economist; and as he does always act upon the interests of the present hour, without regard to past engagements, he can have with him but those who superstitiously deem him a prophet, or those who choose to _servir à tout prix_. He is rude, suspicious, and vindictive. The only great minister with whom he can be compared, Richelieu, was at least frank and open towards friend and foe. Bismarck has never negotiated with any man, nor charged any man with an important measure, without becoming their ruin, or changed them into implacable enemies–Savigny, Usedom, Arnim, Gortschakoff. The good genius of his country has protected Moltke against his insidious praises and bitter censures. It is easy to prove that, during the late war, all the good advice given to the King came from Moltke; all hurried, or lame, or improvident, or perfidiously cruel measures came from the Chancellor. Why did he leave half of the forts round Paris in the power, not of our army, but of the armed rabble, to which he left the possession of 1,500 field-pieces and 300,000 guns, while he disarmed the regulars to the last man? To his calculations we owe the Commune; posterity will hold him responsible for that incalculable calamity, which it was at every hour in his power to avert, or to crush instantly. Presently his tenure of office is very precarious. The Emperor is eighty-two, and has never liked Bismarck; he has given recently some signs that he feels galled by the chain. The Crown Prince may make use of him, and sacrify his personal feelings to the advantage not to upset suddenly the system of government; but, under Friedrich Wilhelm V., it is more than probable that Bismarck shall have to choose between retire or obey. Even in the present occurrence, considering that France is wholly taken up with her internal dissensions, which are not likely to become soon better, and that Russia has need of time for recruiting her exhausted resources, it was certainly not sound policy to blow the trumpet of a coalition which was, presently, dreamed of by nobody, and shall, in the future, result from the necessity of things.

The article upon the Code of Criminal Law is an excellent treatise of _Criminalison_; we, too, want a _refonte_ of our criminal law. What is called civilisation has gorged our society with an infinity of malpractices unknown to our ruder but better fathers; and we suffer from the bane of modern civilisation, that idiot charity towards the refuse of mankind, coupled to a perfect indifference for the honest people they assail or bring to ruin. To that endemic disease of the mind no penal statute can afford a remedy. MacMahon was as weak as a school-girl on such occasions; Grévy is scarce better; at least he does not call weakness Christian charity.

‘The Impressions of Theophrastus Such’ are little intelligible to me, merely because I have read so few books of the authoress. Doudan [Footnote: Ximenes Doudan (1800-72) was in early life a tutor in the family of the Due de Broglie, and remained attached to him. His critical judgement and sparkling conversation made him a special feature of the Duchess’s _salon_. He was well known in literary society, and was compared by Reeve (_Ed. Rev._, July 1878) with John Allen of Holland House. Like Allen, his reputation was based almost entirely on his conversation and encyclopaedic knowledge. After his death, his few essays and numerous letters were collected and edited by the Comte d’Haussonville, under the title of _Mélanges et Lettres_(4 tomn. 8vo. 1876).] wrote that he could never be quite unhappy while he had _des romans anglais à lire_; I confess that, when they are not first-rate, they seem to me to belong rather to the department of industry than to that of literature. The article upon the civil engineers of Britain is an admirable compilation of much that’s useful to know and easy to understand; the magnificence of the _tableau_ strikes the fancy and weighs upon the mind. But, after all, is humanity become grander, or better, or happier by so many performances of the inquisitive and constructive genius? _That’s the question_. With trembling hope I’ll answer Yes! Life is less dark, a little longer, and better provided against the material plagues of nature: but farther?

I am pent up with a severe cold, and losing the last day of a capricious autumn. Mme. d’Affry has promised me a visit.

What of the parliamentary strife between Disraeli and his rivals? At least, it is _Diomedes cum Glauco_, statesman pitched against statesman. But in our camp: _non melius compositus cum Bitho Bacchius_. Yours truly,

A. C.

The letter that follows is endorsed by Reeve ‘M. de Circourt’s last letter to me. He was struck with apoplexy on the 15th, and died on the 17th of November. The last token of fifty years’ friendship’:–

_From the Comte de Circourt_

La Celle, November 12th.

My dear Sir,–Many thanks for your kind letter of the 6th. I am still an invalid, _conjuguant_ in all its tenses the verb _grippe_, with its near relation bronchitis. However, I am recovering by-and-by, and the weather–not fine, still very mild–helps me towards recovering my liberty of locomotion. I am the more sorry for my _réclusion_ that I had begun some plantations in my garden. Fancy what it is to plant trees by half-dozens and to buy land by wheelbarrows!

We are in a state of partial fermentation and general disgust. The President _videt meliora probatque, deteriora sequitur_; he is absolutely sunken in the opinions, but tolerated, because he lets every party at freedom to plot and to hope. Waddington does not fare better, but Jules Simon has presently no chance of replacing him. The sympathy which Ferry has proclaimed for the Reformed Church [Footnote: See _Times_, November 8th.]–very natural in itself–may be mischievous for them; our nation has never any sympathy for minorities. The leaders of the Clerical party have lowered their teaching and their practices to the level of the most obtuse intellects and the most childish enthusiasms; they make conquests by myriads; and as, in our present state of society, numbers are accounted for everything, the Government and ruling party have already encountered, and shall encounter more and more, a formidable opposition, which, if it does not drag the country into civil war, cannot fail to accelerate and precipitate the fate of the Republican Government. As the Duc d’Aumale seems resolved never to put himself forward, the conjectures hover between Galliffet [Footnote: General de Galliffet was more especially known for the stern justice he had meted out to the Communards of 1871.] and several others, all men of action, although none of them has the prestige which made, in 1799, the task of Bonaparte so wonderfully easy. The ‘Great Unknown’ will be revealed to us by some sudden stroke; our people is perfectly disposed to acknowledge a master, and prays only that ‘nous ayons un bon tyran,’ since we must have one.

Lord Beaconsfield’s speech [Footnote: At the Mansion House on the 10th. See _Times_, November 11th.] shall not put an end to the embarrassments of our Exchange, shaken to its foundations by the curiously tragical episode [Footnote: ‘Gigantic swindle’ would more correctly designate it. See _Times_, November 7th. Philippart, having made away with some 100,000,000 francs, had judiciously vanished.] of Philippart. _Imperium et Libertas_, i.e. ‘Domination abroad and Freedom at home,’ is a proud legacy of ‘the most high and palmy days of Rome’; but it will be difficult to force the submission to that maxim upon all the powers of the world. If the Turks had studied the history of classical times, they would believe that the days of _Civis Romanus sum_ and the _Reges clientes Populi Romani_ are come again for the East; and what immense space does this name design, since the exclusive and dominating influence claimed by the Premier begins at the Adriatic and ends–nowhere; for the whole of Affghanistan being brought under British control, and Turkish Asia on the other side being claimed as a protected and indirectly governed country, it will become necessary that the intermediate region, Persia, be assimilated to the rest of the dependencies of an Empire which, at the farthest end, shall soon be contiguous to China.

The task of the Russian people is very different. The stern decrees of Providence have made of it the antagonist and hereditary foe of the Asiatic barbarics, which it has faced under the walls of Kief and Moscow, and pressed, by dint of repeated battles and immense sacrifices, to the foot of the Himalaya range and the course of the Upper Oxus. Sooner or later, a tremendous shock must happen between the two gigantic Empires which meet upon that debateable ground. I hope I may never witness it; but I do regret much the disparition of the ample neutral ground, which till lately stretched from the Indus to the Yaxartes….

Many wishes for your health and occupations.

Yours very truly,


The Journal gives the chronicle of the last weeks of the year:–

_November 22nd_.–Visit to Chatsworth. Delane died. _23rd_.–Chatsworth. Long talk with Lord Hartington.

_29th_.–Delane’s funeral at Easthampstead. Went down with Barlow and Stebbing; then across by Woking to Lithe Hill (Haslemere); very cold.

At Christmas severe illness came on–gout and violent bleeding of the nose. I was totally laid up for two months.

The year had been a sad one, and had marked its progress by the death of many of Reeve’s dearest and oldest friends–Lady Blackett (to whom he had always been tenderly attached), Longman, Circourt, and Delane.



The very serious illness which ushered in the year 1880, and which confined Reeve to his room till near the end of January, formed a very important era in his life. Though it passed away, so that, after a fortnight at Brighton, he was able, by the middle of February, to attend to his official duties at the Council Office, the bad effects remained. He was no longer a young man, but he had carried his years well. He had travelled, he had occasionally shot, and always with a keen sense of enjoyment. Now, the full weight of his age told at once. His illness left him ten years older; unable to undergo the fatigue of field sports, and feeling that of travel sometimes irksome.

And Foxholes afforded him a tempting excuse. From this time, instead of going for his holiday to Scotland, to France, or to Geneva, it seemed so much easier to go to Foxholes, so much more comfortable to spend it there. And for the next fifteen years a large part of his time was passed at Foxholes, where, in the most delightful climate known in this country, surrounded by beautiful scenery and with a commanding view of the sea, amid the comforts of home and in the company of his books and his chosen friends, he could say, from both the material and moral point of view:

Suave, mari magno turbantibus aequora ventis, E terra magnum alterius spectare laborem.

Of course, his duties at the Council Office required him to be in town during the season and while the Court was sitting; and in the April of this year he noted a breakfast at Lord Houghton’s, to meet Renan, and presiding as a Vice-President at a meeting of the Society of Antiquaries. Otherwise the Journal is almost a blank, containing little beyond the dates of going to Foxholes or returning to town.

But though thus in a measure withdrawing from the swirl of society in which so much of his life had been passed, he in no sense lost touch with the movements of the day, and in none of these did he take a more lively interest than in those which affected the state of France. And that seemed particularly unsettled. No one could attempt a forecast of the future, though wild guessing was easy. Nothing was certain; everything was possible. Hope was guided rather by fancy than by reason, and tinted the years to come in brighter colours than–now that those years have passed –history has warranted. For many years back the French Princes had been Reeve’s occasional correspondents, but their letters had seldom had any political significance. At this time they began to have a more serious importance; and during the next six years those of the Comte de Paris, more especially, are full of deep and pregnant meaning. In England, the topics of the day were the dissolution in March, Mr. Gladstone’s Mid-Lothian campaign, which will live in history as an instance of the noxious admixture of sentiment and politics, and the overwhelming success of the Liberal party at the polls, which brought Mr. Gladstone back to office, at the head of an absolute majority in the House of Commons of 56. Reeve, of course, followed the progress of the election with anxious eyes. To Mr. T. Norton Longman he wrote:–

_Foxholes, April 2nd_.–The Liberal gain on the Elections is far more than I anticipated, and I begin to hope there may be a decided Liberal majority. What I most deprecate is an even balance of parties. If the Liberals are strong, they will be moderate; if weak, they will be violent.

It is raining heavily to-day–rather damp for the electors, but a capital thing for the country and for my shrubs.

The further course of the election brought him the following letters from the Comte de Paris:–

_Château d’Eu, le 12 avril_.–Je vous remercie de tout mon coeur des voeux que vous m’adressez à l’occasion de la naissance de mon fils, et je suis heureux de pouvoir vous donner les meilleures nouvelles de la mère et de l’enfant.

Je suis bien peiné d’apprendre que vous avez été si longtemps souffrant cet hiver. La rigueur de la saison peut bien en avoir été la cause, et j’espère que l’été achèvera de vous remettre. Nous serions heureux, la Comtesse de Paris et moi, si durant cet été vous pouviez, avec Madame et Mademoiselle Reeve, renouveler la visite que vous nous avez faite au château d’Eu il y a trois ans. Depuis lors la maison a été toujours en deuil; l’événement qui vient de s’accomplir ici nous permet, j’aime à le croire, une année plus heureuse.

The result of the elections in England has caused great surprise in France. Nothing led us to expect such a complete change in the opinion of the electorate. When I saw Mr. Gladstone a few months since, he did not seem at all confident of his party’s speedy return to power. A year or two ago I should have greatly regretted the fall of Lord Beaconsfield; but my opinion is entirely changed since Lord Salisbury’s speech in honour of the Austro-German alliance. Lord Beaconsfield’s term of power has had the one good result of obliging the Government which succeeds him to pay more and closer attention to Continental politics than the English Cabinet did in 1870 and 1871. But for some time back the Russophobia of the Foreign Office and its agents has been so great that it looked as if England was going to give up the idea of preserving the equilibrium of the Continent, and become the accomplice or the dupe of those who played on this passion.

_20 avril_.–Je m’empresse de vous remercier de votre lettre et de vous dire tout le plaisir que la Comtesse de Paris et moi nous aurons à vous voir ici avec Madame et Mademoiselle Reeve. Malheureusement les trois dernières semaines d’août sont le seul moment où je ne serai pas ici, et si vous venez un peu plus tôt en France je vous prierais de commencer par le château d’Eu…. I have read the article on M’Clellan by Mr. Curtis, in the last number of the ‘North American Review.’ It did not teach me much, for I have often talked it all over with M’Clellan, in his visits to Europe. But the article is good, and all the facts alleged are perfectly true. Lincoln was very weak in this business, the tool–without knowing it–of Stanton and Halleck. The author sometimes closes his eyes to M’Clellan’s faults, which, though they do not excuse Lincoln, impartiality will not permit us to ignore. M’Clellan was an excellent organiser and a skilful general, but he made blunders; he could not take a decided resolution at the proper time, and it is not correct to say that he was considered a faultless general: he was loved, appreciated, and respected by all, and justly considered as the best chief of the Federal armies, when Grant, Sherman, and Thomas were as yet little known. Personally, he was, at times, very indiscreet: he permitted those about him to speak of the President in insulting terms, and he wrote the letter quoted by Mr. Curtis. An extremely silly thing, for it could not possibly do any good, and it was easy to see that his enemies would use it against him. With these exceptions, I entirely share the views of the author of the article.

We await the formation of your new ministry with curiosity. I agree with you that it is better that Gladstone should be its recognised head than its unofficial and irresponsible leader. I hope the experience of 1871, and the verdict of the electors in 1874, have opened his eyes to the dangers of a _far niente_ policy, as practised by the Foreign Office during his last administration.

_27 avril_.–Je vous remercie infiniment de votre lettre du 21 et je me réjouis bien de penser que nous aurons probablement votre visite ici au mois de juillet. Je vous remercie de l’intention que vous m’exprimez d’arranger vos projets de manière à pouvoir venir en France à cette époque.

I see Mr. Gladstone has not been afraid of the fatigue you thought would be too much for him. I quite understand that after his disaster in 1874 he should insist on a material proof of his wondrous political rehabilitation. But it seems to me that he ought not to have combined the Exchequer with the leadership–unless, indeed, his friends wanted to handicap him by allowing him to take upon his strong shoulders a burden which is usually divided between two ministers. I am not surprised at this change, so complete, so striking to one who thinks of the time when Mr. Gladstone, almost disavowed by the party he had so imprudently led to defeat, could hardly find a constituency to open the doors of the House to him. It is a spectacle presented by all free countries, a salutary warning to the victors of the day, and a consolation to the vanquished, to whom hope is always left. But what does astound me is that the change should not have been foreseen. It is rather a severe democratic shock to the parliamentary machine. Is it the effect of the lowering of the franchise, or of the secret ballot? I do not know. But does not the astonishment of the leaders of the victorious party prove that their followers are escaping from their control? And if so, where and to whom will they go? However, I am confident that the practical spirit which has hitherto inspired all classes of the English people, as they have been successively called upon to take their part in the government–from the old nobility to the petty shopkeepers–will not be found wanting in the new electoral body, constituted by the last reform.

_4 juin_.–Si, comme je l’espère bien, vous pouvez réaliser la bonne promesse que vous m’avez faite de venir ici avec Madame et Mademoiselle Reeve dans la seconde moitié de juillet, je serais heureux de vous voir fixer votre visite aux environs du 22: en effet, nous attendons ce jour-là ou le suivant quelques personnes qui vous intéresseront certainement et qui seront charmées de vous rencontrer: le Comte et la Comtesse d’Eu, le Duc et la Duchesse d’Audiffret-Pasquier, M. et Madame de Rainneville (Rainnevillea formosa, d’après votre botanique spéciale).

_19 juillet_.–Je m’empresse de vous remercier de votre lettre, et de vous dire que je vous enverrai jeudi, à Dieppe, une voiture pour vous chercher à l’Hôtel de la Plage à deux heures après midi, à moins d’avis contraire.

Toutefois je dois vous prévenir que M. Alexandre Dumas, qui habite près de Dieppe, et auquel j’avais demandé de venir déjeuner ici l’un de ces jours, en lui laissant le choix du jour, m’annonce qu’il viendra déjeuner au château le jeudi 22. Le déjeuner est à onze heures et demie. Si vous désiriez le rencontrer il faudrait que vous partiez le matin de Dieppe. Dans ce cas, sur un avis de vous, je vous enverrais la voiture à neuf heures du matin, au lieu de deux heures après midi.

So on July 21st, Reeve, with Mrs. Reeve, left London for Dieppe, whence they went on to the Château d’Eu. On the 26th they went on, through St. Quentin, Namur, and Liège, to Aix, where, for the next fortnight, Reeve drank waters and took baths. They then returned through Brussels and London, reaching Foxholes on August 14th.

And there they stayed for nearly three months, during which time, beyond noting a few visits or visitors, the Journal is a blank. On November 6th they returned to London.

_To Mr. T. Norton Longman_

_C. O., November 26th_.–I have not for a long time read a book so fascinating to me as these Reminiscences of Carlyle; for though he calls them reminiscences of Irving &c., they are, in fact, essentially an autobiography. It is impossible to present the details of life with more attractive clearness and picturesque effect. The most curious thing is that the style, instead of being a mass of cloudy affectation, is simple, flowing, and natural. To me, especially, all this is most captivating. The account of Mrs. Montagu, Coleridge, the Bullers, the Stracheys, &c. revives a thousand recollections. It was through the Bullers that we first knew Carlyle, and I suppose in due time he will relate his intimacy with the Austins and Sterlings in the same manner.

It is right to say that there are many persons still alive who will not be pleased at having their portraits drawn by so strong a hand–Mrs. Procter, for instance.

Altogether, I think the book is eminently interesting and valuable, and will have a very large circulation indeed. It is the sort of book everybody likes to read, and in this case it is backed by names of great celebrity. I will send the MS. back to you on Monday. What a wonderful thing it is that Froude should have had the patience to copy all this out in his own handwriting!

I dined last night with the Chancellor, and found both him and the Home Secretary deep in ‘Endymion.’ Everybody abuses it more or less, but everybody reads it, so the abuse does not go for much. Only Lady Stanley (the dowager) declares she could not get through the first volume. Such is the strength of party feeling.

_From the Duc d’Aumale_

Chantilly, 2 décembre.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–Je me fais une fête de vous revoir. J’ai vendu mon hôtel de Paris et n’ai pas encore pu y reconstituer d’établissement. Mais Chantilly [Footnote: During the next few years, before he was again exiled, the Duc d’Aumale restored Chantilly on a magnificent scale (see _post_, pp. 319, 320), making it a repository for his splendid collection of pictures, works of art, and library, which included many precious MSS. By a will dated June 3,1884, he bequeathed the whole to the ‘Institut de France,’ in trust for the nation.] est si près! Dès que vous pourrez, donnez-moi votre adresse de Paris, et indiquez-moi quels jours vous serez libre, afin que je puisse en choisir un et vous demander de venir à Chantilly. Dites-moi aussi quels jours il vous serait agréable d’avoir ma loge aux Français.

J’espère bien avoir lu ‘Endymion’ d’ici là. Je vous serre la main.


Reeve was thus meditating a visit to Paris for Christmas, as soon as the Court rose. Its session ended in the death of one of its most esteemed members. Sir James Colvile, formerly Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Bengal, had a house in Rutland Gate, and a great intimacy had grown up between the two. On Friday, December 3rd, he had dined with the Reeves, ‘in fair health and excellent spirits,’ as Mrs. Reeve wrote a few days later. ‘He, with Lady Colvile and his brother-in-law, Lord Blachford, sat on for quite half an hour after the other guests left’ On Saturday morning he went down to the office with Reeve. On the Monday he was dead. Sir Lawrence Peel,[Footnote: First cousin of Sir Robert Peel (the statesman), formerly Chief Justice of Calcutta, and since 1856 a member of the Judicial Committee. He died in 1884, in his 85th year.] one of his colleagues in the Judicial Committee, himself now old and feeble, wrote, apparently the same day:–

My dear Reeve,–A blow terrible indeed to all of us, to me most terrible. A man so close to death as I think myself feels more deeply the awe a sudden death causes. I know not the man to whom a sudden death could come and find more well prepared than he was. I thank you for your kind forethought. Say for me to his late colleagues that I feel his loss to them and to all of us irreparable. That he should go first! Oh God, preserve me and bless you all. Ever yours truly,


Could you say or write a line in season to Lady Colvile? They say I am better.

_To Mr. T. Norton Longman_

_Rutland Gate, December 7th_.–I have been and am horribly upset by the sudden death of Sir James Colvile, which took place yesterday morning. He was really my most intimate friend; for twenty-two years we have worked and lived together, and to all of us the loss is irreparable,

_From Sir Lawrence Peel_

_December 11th_,–One word about your ‘resignation.’ ‘Don’t.’ The weaker the thing is, the more your value will be felt. Sir Montague [Footnote: Sir Montague Smith, one of the paid members of the Judicial Committee. He resigned the office on December 12th, 1881, and died, in his 82nd year, in 1891.] will go. He has as much as told me so, not very lately. It will be a new Court, not the old P. C., nor can it have the character of the House of Lords. It will have its entire way to make, and where is the stuff? It may in time win approval; but it will be a child at first. Of course if things are made unpleasant to you, Go; but my impression is the other way.

I think I do get better, but I am very bad. It [the death of Sir James Colvile] was a terrible shock; and I lie and think, yet cannot throw it off. To-day is the funeral. Alas! Alas! _Nulli flebilior quam mihi!_ When earth covers him, not a better man will be left on its face. _Tibi constabat_. Ever the servant of Duty and of his God, and letting no man note in him a sign that he thought himself better than the ruck…. God bless you! Don’t resign–wait.

On December 15th Reeve went to Paris alone. His Journal notes:–

_17th_.–Opera ‘Aïda,’ with the Comte de Paris and the Duc d’Aumale.

_18th_.–To the Français, with the Duc d’Aumale.

_19th_.–Breakfasted at Chantilly; went all over the Château, rebuilt.

_24th_.–Dined alone with Lord Lyons.

But a few letters written at this time to his wife give the best description of his visit, and call more particular attention to what seems to have been in great measure the cause of it–the paper to be read before the Institute.

_Paris, December 21st_.–I dined yesterday with Laugel to meet the De Witts, the young De Barantes and M. de Mérode. The Duc de Broglie came in the evening. The eldest son of Cornélis de Witt is about to marry Mlle. de Labruyère, a considerable heiress, dans l’Agénois. This is a capital marriage for the family. To-morrow I am going to a lecture by M. Caro at the Sorbonne. On Thursday there is the reception of M. Maxime du Camp (who wrote about the Commune) by M. Caro at the Académie Française, when I shall take my seat amongst the Forty Immortals. It will be interesting. On Wednesday 29th I shall probably make an address to the Institute (simple énoncé de faits) on the State of Landed Property in Ireland–a formidable undertaking!

I think now that the Radicals will break up the Government and break their own necks. I cannot conceive that the English people and Parliament will condone such monstrous conduct. I therefore now hope that they will play out their abominable game. Mr. Plunket’s speech is admirable.

_December 23rd_.–I am just come back from the Institute, where there has been a grand function–the reception of Maxime du Camp by M. Caro on behalf of the Académie Française. All Paris was mad to go, and I believe they expected the Communards would storm the sacred building. I sat aloft among the Immortals, with the Duc de Broglie, Haussonville, Lesseps, Vieil Castel, and next Alexandre Dumas, who was very pleasant. The Duc d’Aumale was on the other side.

Yesterday we had a very pleasant dinner at the De Broglies’–Gavard, Lambert de Ste.-Croix and Cornélis de Witt. They shot 1,250 pheasants at Ferrières [Footnote: It was here that the celebrated meeting between Bismarck and Jules Favre (cf. _ante_, pp. 186-7) took place, on September 19th, 1870.] (Baron Rothschild’s) on Sunday. The Comte de Paris brought down 300 himself.

I have written out my speech on Irish Land and read it to Gavard. It will take about fifteen or twenty minutes in the delivery. I breakfast tomorrow morning with St. Hilaire.

_December 27th_.–I went to the English Church in the Rue d’Aguesseau on Christmas Day–full congregation and nice service–but saw nobody I knew. Mme. Faucher’s dinner was dull, but Passy and Leroy-Beaulieu were there, and there was some good music after dinner. I called yesterday on Feuillet de Conches and Mme. Mohl, each looking a thousand and older than the hills; and I spent some time in the galleries of the Louvre with my old favourites in their eternal youth. It is infinitely touching, when so much else is gone, to look at those pictures which I myself remember for sixty years in unchanging beauty. I perfectly remember the impression made on me when I was seven years old by the picture of the Entry of Henry IV into Paris.

I have copied out my whole oration to be read on Wednesday, and, in copying, enlarged it. It is chiefly taken from the Irish Land Pamphlet.

_December 30th_.–My discourse at the Institute went off very well. I was told by the best French writer, Mignet, that it was well written, and by the best French speaker, Jules Simon, that it was well delivered, which is enough to satisfy a modest man. The MS. will be printed and published in several forms. Léon Say sat by my side. There were about thirty people present.

I went to the Due de Broglie’s reception last night. Nothing can exceed the dulness of French society–ten or twelve men sitting in a circle to discuss miserable municipal politics; not another subject, or a book, or an idea so much as mentioned. I am now going to breakfast with the Duc d’Aumale at Laugel’s.

Gladstone seems to think that everything must go right since he is in power. It is a case of mental delusion, but I am curious to see how the House of Commons will deal with him.

_December 31st_.–We had a very pleasant breakfast with the Duc d’Aumale at Laugel’s yesterday. He was most agreeable. He had a narrow escape on Monday from a stag at bay, which pursued him with fury, killed a hound and wounded a horse. He said, ‘J’ai fui comme je n’ai jamais fui de ma vie.’ The stags they hunt are wild red deer. He asked me to go in the evening with him to the Français to see ‘Hernani,’ which I did; glad to see the old piece again, though I thought it not well acted.

I am now going to breakfast with St.-Hilaire.

_To Mr. T. Norton Longman_

_Paris, December 29th_.–I am very anxious to learn what the bulk of the Liberal party in England now think of the results of a Radical policy in Ireland and elsewhere. Unhappily our friends, the Whigs, are to a certain extent responsible for having assented to it, though reluctantly; but the real author of this Irish policy is Mr. Bright. The consequences of it appear so disastrous that I cannot conceive it will last. But we are on the eve of stormy times.

The Journal continues:–

1881, _January 2nd_.–Returned to London in 8 1/2 hours.

The Club met in January as Parliament was sitting.

_14th_.–Dinner at home. Prince Lobanow,[Footnote: The Russian Ambassador.] Acton, Burys, C. Villiers, Leckys.

_15th_.–Small dinner at Lord Derby’s.

_18th_.–Tremendous snow-storm. 21st. Excessive cold.

_From Mr. E. Cheney_

_Audley Square, January 5th_.–I must apologise for having kept your precious manuscript [Footnote: The _Greville Memoirs_, second part], so long. The truth is, I left town for a month, and left the volumes carefully locked up, and only finished them on my return. I have read them with the deepest interest, and am truly obliged to you for having procured me so much amusement. I think these volumes even surpassing the last in interest.

I see you have marked several passages for omission which I should retain. I allude particularly to those relating to the French Revolution and the conduct of the Orleans family. It is impossible that any relation of those facts can be made so as to be agreeable to that family; and no omissions could be made that would render the narration palatable to them. Besides, these are Charles Greville’s opinions, and not yours; and you are not answerable for them.

His remarks on the state of Ireland and the conduct of the Government are curious, as being exactly those which people are making at this moment. Gladstone’s policy is exactly that of Lord John Russell; but the urgency of action is now still greater, and the outrages committed still more heinous. Gladstone may apply the words of the poet to himself–‘In not forbidding, you command the crime.’ Also the Duke of Wellington’s opinions on army reform are applicable to the present moment, when such determined attacks are made upon its efficiency. The Duke said, ‘We had a damned good army, and they are trying to make it a damned bad one.’ Our present patriotic Government, he might say, ‘are trying to make it a damned deal worse.’

What would be personally offensive to the Queen should be omitted; but as to his criticisms on public men and their measures, I cannot see why they should be suppressed. The daily newspapers all over England are free to make what comments they please, and I cannot see that a well-informed individual is not entitled to the same privilege.

His account of his quarrel with Lord G. Bentinck should in justice to him be printed; Lord G. told his own story, and Greville has every right to give his version of it. He certainly intended it, for he read me that part of his journal. The name of the Duchess of —— should of course be left in blank, but, with this exception, I think the whole might be printed. There is no private scandal, and public men and their friends should not be thin-skinned, and must learn to bear adverse criticism. The affectation of calling Lord Russell ‘John’ and ‘Johnny’ is offensive and tiresome; also, by omitting persons’ titles there is frequently some ambiguity– ‘Grey’ may mean Sir George or the Earl, and the context does not always make his meaning clear.

I think a few lines of preface from you explaining your motives for leaving Greville to express his own views and opinions would quite clear you with all reasonable people.

_From M. B. St. Hilaire_ [Footnote: At this time Ministre des Affaires Etrangères.]

Paris: January 10.

Cher Monsieur Reeve,–I quite understand that the reticence of the Tories is very wise. Office is not tempting, and it is prudent to leave it to those who actually have it. But the situation is very precarious, as Mr. Gladstone will no doubt soon learn. Meanwhile he has given me powerful assistance by speaking of arbitration as he has done, supported by the complete and unanimous assent of the English Cabinet. This may very likely decide the Greeks and Turks to adopt more sensible notions. But the thing is giving me a great deal of trouble…

I hope you may be able to pacify Ireland, but it will be very difficult. Against such atrocious and persistent determination, force is almost as unavailing as gentleness. If, as we may believe, that is what Cromwell met with, we can understand the excesses into which the barbarity of his age led him; but in two hundred and thirty years we have not gained much. Even emigration has had no good effect. ‘Tis a frightful sore; though during the last forty years England has done wonders to cure it.

Much might be said on this subject. I see by the newspapers that you have read before our Academy a most interesting paper on Property in Ireland. If you should print it, I hope you will not forget me. Towards the end of this month I will send you one of my latest works–to wit, a Yellow Book on Greece. It will at least be curious.

Agréez, cher Monsieur Reeve, tous mes voeux de nouvel an pour vous et pour tous ceux qui vous sont chers. Bonne santé.

Votre bien dévoué,


_Paris, January 11th_.–I am greatly obliged for the account of your interview with Musurus Pasha. If the key to this business is in our views on the Conference of Berlin, the house is open, and we have nothing to do but enter. I have written with my own hand three long despatches, showing by a reference to Vattel that the Conference was nothing more than the mediation promised by the XXIVth article of the Treaty of Berlin. These despatches I have communicated in the first place to Athens and Constantinople, and afterwards to all the foreign ambassadors here, as well as to Essad Pasha and to Braïlas Arméni.

If there is one thing certain, it is that the Conference of Berlin neither did nor could do anything but mediate; it merely gave advice; it did not deliver judgement to be enforced. I am doing what I can to convince the Greeks of this all-important fact, but hitherto without much success. I have even gone farther, and have pointed out to them in these despatches the limits within which arbitration will probably have to confine itself. As I am only one out of six, I can do no more, and even this was perhaps too much. The Porte and Greece cannot help knowing all this. The public also will know it by the end of the present month, when I shall publish the despatches in the yellow book which I am preparing, and which I will send to you.

The state of Ireland appears to us here to be truly dreadful. We do not see how such crimes can be tolerated.

_From Mr. E. Cheney_

_January 13th_.–I see no reason why this sequel [of the ‘Greville Memoirs’] should not be published whenever it is convenient, but of this you only can be judge. There is very little private scandal, and that little should of course be omitted.

The Queen should always be spared; but as to Lord J. Russell and Lord Palmerston, they are public men, and their public conduct requires no reserve in the discussion of it;–the Queen herself, in her own Journals, speaks of them and of Gladstone in terms that prove how little reserve she thought necessary. It is amazing to me that a man who lived so much in the world [as Greville], and who had great curiosity and a taste for gossip, should so carefully have avoided all scandal.

The criticism that was sometimes made on the former volumes reminds me rather of the note on the quiz on Crabbe in the ‘Rejected Addresses’:–‘The author is well aware how ill it becomes his clerical profession to give any pain, however slight, to any individual, however foolish or wicked.’ Pain must be given, and offence will be taken; but you will do what is right and must be indifferent. I think these last volumes even more amusing than the first, and the discussions about Ireland are of peculiar interest at this moment–I am very glad that these precious volumes are again in your hands. I felt quite uneasy whilst they were in mine.

_From the Comte de Paris_

Chateau d’Eu, le 2 février.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–Nous ne pouvions douter, ma femme et moi, de la part que vous et Madame Reeve prendriez au malheur si cruel et si inattendu qui vient de nous frapper. Vous aviez vu ici le bel enfant que Dieu nous avait envoyé il y a dix mois [Footnote: _Ante, p. 275_] et dont la naissance nous avait causé une si grande joie. Il était si fort et si bien portant que jusqu’à la veille de sa mort nous n’avions pas eu un instant d’inquiétude. Vous comprenez done bien notre douleur. Je ne doute pas que Mademoiselle votre fille ne s’y associe, car nous connaissons et nous apprécions les sentiments dont vous nous avez donné, tons les trois, tant de preuves.

Ma femme, qui depuis dix ans a perdu trois soeurs, deux frères, et deux fils, est, comme vous le pensez, bien accablée; mais les enfants qui lui restent l’obligeront heureusement à reprendre à la vie. Ne voulant plus après notre malheur laisser derrière elle notre dernière fille, la petite Isabelle, et ne pouvant l’emmener en Espagne dans cette rude saison, elle a remis ce voyage à l’automne prochain, et s’est décidée à ne pas quitter le château d’Eu, où l’hiver a été rude. Mais si nous avons eu le froid et la neige, l’Andalousie n’a pas été épargnée par la tempête, et les inondations y sont terribles.

Je termine en vous priant de croire aux sentiments bien sincères de Votre affectionné,


During the preceding autumn the state of Ireland had been exceptionally bad. There were many who believed that the attempt was being made, by a cold-blooded calculation, to work on the sentimental instincts of Mr. Gladstone’s character. The verb ‘to boycott’ had been introduced into the English language; murders and agrarian outrages had been frequent; but witnesses and juries were so terrorised, that prosecution was found to be difficult and conviction impossible. In charging the grand jury at Galway on December 10th, the judge had commented on the fact that, out of 698 criminal offences committed in Connaught during the four months, thirty-nine only were for trial, no sufficient evidence as to the other 659 being obtainable. On November 2nd, fourteen members of the Land League–including five members of Parliament–were arrested and committed for trial on the charge of inciting to crime. The facts were matter of public notoriety, but the jury refused to convict, and the prisoners were discharged. The Government was compelled to act; and on January 24th Mr. Forster moved for leave to bring in a bill for the better protection of person and property in Ireland. After an unprecedented obstruction on the part of the Irish members, and after a continuous sitting of forty-one hours, the Speaker summarily closed the debate, and the bill, commonly known as the Coercion Bill, passed the first reading on February 2nd. On the 3rd, twenty-seven of the Irish members were suspended; and the bill, having passed through the succeeding stages, finally became law on March 2nd.

* * * * *

_From M. B. St.-Hilaire_

_Paris, February 6th_.–I am happy in your approval, and permit me to add that I am proud of it. I know the value and sincerity of your judgements. You have a long experience of politics, and every reason not to be deceived even by the most obscure complications. There was certainly an intrigue on foot against the Cabinet, but I believe a stop has been put to it for some time to come, and we shall now probably have all the trouble of the general election, which will be very advantageous for the republic; but, from a personal point of view, I am anything but charmed with the prospect, finding myself chained up for several months. Nothing could be more vexatious, though I put as good a face on it as I can.

We do not understand here how a political assembly can endure what your Parliament has put up with. Thanks to Mr. Gladstone, the Speaker is now armed with sufficient power, and I take for granted he will know how to use it. But Ireland, terrible Ireland, is always there. If an insurrection break out, it will be necessary to have recourse to repressive measures, more or less similar to those of Cromwell. I do not believe that there would be many in Europe to blame you. How can you do otherwise? Of their own free will, the Irish sink to the level of brute beasts, which are to be tamed only by force.

* * * * *

The next letter, and many others following it, from M. Barthélemy St.-Hilaire, refer to the action of France in regard to Tunis, as to which there was a strong feeling in England both then and since. France, it may be admitted, had grievances; whether she would have taken the steps she did for their settlement if the English Government had been stronger in its foreign policy may very well be doubted.

For many years, almost since the first establishment of the French in Algeria, there had been differences between France and Tunis, over which the French pretended a protectorate which neither Tunis nor Constantinople would allow. There had been also many commercial difficulties–some honest, some dishonest; but what led to the acute stage which these difficulties and differences assumed in 1881 was the purchase, in 1880, by the Société Marseillaise, for 100,000 £, of a large tract of land known as the Enfida–subject, it had been stipulated, ‘to the provisions of the local law.’ But the purchase was no sooner publicly declared than its legality was disputed; a Maltese–therefore an English subject–named Levy claiming that by the local law he had a right of pre-emption and was prepared to buy. This right the French Government denied, and alleged that the intending purchasers were really Italians–private or official–Levy being only a man of straw put forward to strengthen their case by the English name. Lord Granville, the then Foreign Secretary, instructed the English Consul at Tunis that it was an affair of Tunis law, and that he was not to interfere beyond seeing that the English subject got what the law entitled him to. The French Government, however–of which M. St.-Hilaire was the exponent–refused to be bound by Tunis law, and on May 1st landed 10,000 soldiers, and took military possession of Tunis, disclaiming all idea of being at war with Tunis, but being obliged–they said–to defend and maintain their just rights. They were neither going to annex Tunis nor to rebuild Carthage.

* * * * *

_From M. B. St.-Hilaire_

_Paris, February 25th_.–I should be quite as deeply vexed as you if any coolness should arise between England and France. I am doing everything in my power to maintain and even strengthen the good relations. I am happy to say we have a better understanding than ever in Egypt; but at Tunis matters are not so favourable, and I fear that the English Cabinet has been too hasty in taking under its protection a person who is but little deserving of it. I hope to show this very plainly. The Marseilles Company which we defend is quite _en règle_, in every respect, and what M. Levy is aiming at against it is simply a forcible spoliation by means of an intrigue hatched by the principal members of the Tunis Government, [Footnote: It is quite possible that this was true, but it was merely an assertion based on the one-sided declaration of the Marseilles Company and its agents.] with the prime minister at their head. And whatever difference of opinion there may be, Lord Granville, of his own accord, said to M. Challemel-Lacour that in this there was no cause of quarrel between the two countries. That is my opinion also, and I hope to bring the English Cabinet to it; but it is not for us to sacrifice the Marseilles Company, by subjecting it to tribunals whose hostile decision is known beforehand. The whole trouble has been caused by the Italians, who have started and are prosecuting this intrigue, at the very moment in which they are asking us for a loan of six hundred and fifty millions.

The speech of M. Gambetta was eloquent, and above all dramatic, but not convincing; and it is really very difficult to believe that he knew nothing of the Thomassin mission till after it had failed. I have no knowledge of what passed between M. de Freycinet and M. Gambetta; but it is certain that for the last five months Gambetta has made no attempt to control me and my policy. He affects to show his sympathy and approval whenever he meets me, and notably so last Monday. At the same time, his newspapers attack me in every way they can, whilst he, verbally, disavows them, as he did for M. Proust and M. Reinach. This double game does not tell in Gambetta’s favour; he has lost much during the last two months, and if the _scrutin de liste_ is not passed, his influence will be greatly diminished. In short, he is playing a very equivocal part, which is injurious both to himself and to this republic. What saves him are attacks of the kind which M. de Broglie ineffectually made yesterday in the Senate….

Of current and social events the Journal notes:–

_March 5th._–Visit to Battle Abbey. Duke and Duchess of Somerset there. Ed. Stanhope, Arthur Balfour, H. Brougham, Lord Strathnairn.

_11th._–Dinner at home for General Roberts: but he had been ordered off to the Transvaal.

_13th._–Emperor of Russia (Alexander II.) murdered.

_16th._–Tennyson gave an evening party in Eaton Square.

_April 7th._–To Foxholes. Cold: gouty. Lady Colvile came.

_20th._–My cousin, John Taylor, died.

_26th._–Lord Beaconsfield’s funeral.

Of this last, he received the following account from Mr. T. Norton Longman:–

_April 28th._–The sad ceremony I had the honour of attending the day before yesterday will for ever live in the memory of all who were present. Nothing could have been more simple in its character, nothing more striking in its solemnity, and nothing more in strict accordance with his wishes. I may well say I shall not forget so great an occasion, not only from the fact that the ceremony was the burial of a great man, but from the very select band of followers I had the privilege of joining. There were only 120 invitations sent out, and all these were not made use of. I travelled down in a saloon carriage with Drs. Quain, Bruce, Lord Lytton, Lord Alington, Count Münster, with all of whom I had very pleasant conversation. Sir William Harcourt, Lord Rosebery, the Danish Minister, and another ambassador were also in the carriage; so I had plenty of good company. I had a little conversation with poor Lord Rowton, and thanked him for thinking of me. ‘Not at all,’ he said; ‘I am quite sure it would be _his_ wish that you should be here to-day.’ This was, to say the least of it, gratifying. The persons who appeared to be most touched were poor Bruce and Lord Henry Lennox. On our return to the Manor about fifty of us went into the drawing-room to hear the will read, and a very interesting document it proved to be. It is perfectly clear Lord Beaconsfield contemplated a great deal of publication. After the reading was finished and those present had mostly left the room, I waited behind a little for the three Princes to move first; and, much to my surprise, the Duke of Connaught turned round and shook me by the hand. This little incident makes it all a peculiarly interesting and eventful day. We all returned to town together (I mean the Princes and the guests); and I think I may safely say that a train never arrived at Paddington Station with a more distinguished company on board.

As I walked up from the church I could not help thinking that the last time I walked up that hill I had poor Lord B. on my arm. The demand for ‘Endymion’ is very great, and in fact the demand for all his novels is greater than we can meet. We are printing night and day to try and keep the trade supplied.

_From M. B. St.-Hilaire_

_Paris, 27 avril_. Il y a bien des jours que je voulais vous écrire, et ce long silence me faisait craindre que vous ne fussiez malade, comme vous l’étiez en effet; mais je me disais aussi que les vacances de Pâques vous ameneraient sans doute à Paris. J’espère que le printemps vous guérira complètement de cet accès; et que vous serez délivré de ce mal si douloureux, dès que la chaleur nous sera revenue. Ici, nous avons un temps des plus maussades.

I have done everything in my power to keep clear of this Tunis business; but the Khroumirs’ affair has filled the cup to overflowing, and we are obliged to resort to force. I shall finish the business off as quickly as I can, and as we have no idea of annexation, all that we want is a treaty with the Bey, giving a lasting guarantee for the security of our frontier and our interests. I believe that even in Italy people are beginning to understand or to admit the necessity which is pressing on us; but they will owe us a grudge, and later on will resent it, if they can. For the present, the loan of six hundred and fifty millions paralyses their wrath. We are no more going to refound Carthage than Italy is going to re-establish the Roman Empire.

The death of Lord Beaconsfield is a great blow for England. I have noticed, not without some surprise, that I am of the same age as he was.

I have reason to believe that Lord Dufferin is quite of your opinion about Russia, and thinks that the most truly sick man is not at Constantinople. He may be right. Meanwhile the Conference will fail. I happen to know that three of us will refuse–England, Italy, and France. Austria would like to do the same.

People are speaking no more of the _scrutin de liste_ than if the question did not exist. It was in fact altogether artificial; but the talk will begin again with the meeting of the Chamber. The _scrutin d’arrondissement_ appears to gain ground. Its success is much to be desired; for if it is rejected, we shall pretty quickly find ourselves in a critical position.

_May 16th_.–Your letter is gloomy indeed, and should your forebodings be realised you may be sure that I should be as grieved as yourself. All my life, and now as much as ever, I have looked upon the alliance of France and England as infinitely desirable for both; and if I were so unfortunate as to cause a breach between the two countries, it would be very much against my will, and without my knowledge. Tunis cannot be a source of discord between us, and I hope that public opinion, over-excited at present, will return to a more calm and just appreciation of the case. We have declared to Europe that we wish for no annexations or conquests, and will attempt none; we have quite enough with the two million five hundred thousand Mussulmans in Algeria; it would be madness to add fifteen or sixteen hundred thousand more to them, and a hundred and fifty leagues to our frontier. For Algeria thus extended we should require an army of 100,000 men, who would be much missed in case of any complication in Europe. All that we want in Tunis is a power which will not be hostile to us, and continually threaten our African possessions. We shall only occupy Biserta and the other places as long as appears necessary; but we will not make a port of it; for that, as Sir Charles Dilke has said, would involve a cost of some 200 millions. I have just sent Lord Lyons a despatch upon that special subject, which will appear in the next Blue Book.

Tunis will never belong to France; she does not want it; but should it belong to Italy, who already owns Sicily, the passage to Malta might be made difficult. I know that England has not much to fear from Italy; but circumstances may change; and the gratitude she shows towards us now proves how much she will have for other benefactors. I cannot understand how my despatch of May 9th can have been interpreted as the announcement of our taking possession. In form and intention it was quite the contrary. Our actions will show that we only speak the truth. Neither can I admit that even the conquest of Tunis can ever equal in importance the taking of Constantinople by the Russians, which in my eyes will be the greatest event of modern times, as the taking of it by the Turks in 1453 was an important event in the fifteenth century.

As to the Treaty of Commerce, I am doing all in my power to facilitate the negotiations. I suppose that public opinion in England is at present principally occupied with this; and that, if it is satisfactorily arranged, Tunis will very soon be forgotten. A thousand more interests are engaged in the agreement on a specific tariff than could ever be involved in this unfortunate Regency.

But I content myself with saying with the poet–_Di avertant omen_; and I desire that England may be as well disposed towards us as we are towards her.

_May 23rd_.–I knew of the correspondence between Lord Salisbury and Mr. Waddington long ago. I should never have thought myself authorised to publish it; but I will take it from the Blue Book and publish it in the Yellow Book. It is quite allowable.

My declarations of our intentions in Tunis are the exact truth. Annexation would be an act of folly. We have quite enough with three million Mussulmans in Algeria without adding another two million in Tunis, and another hundred and fifty leagues to the length of our frontier, which already reaches from Nemours to La Calle. In doing good to the Regency we are serving ourselves, and we only ask one thing in return–that it should be as well disposed to us as we are towards it. But it is not easy to establish the good terms which would be so profitable to all. England ought to be very well pleased that both sides of the passage to Malta are not in the hands of the same Power, which would be the case if Italy, who already possesses Sicily, had possession of Tunis on the other side. Geography demonstrates the fact. As to us, we wish to do nothing at Biserta. Our port is necessarily at Algiers in the centre of our possessions.

Like you, I deplore the _scrutin de liste_. It will give rise to formidable difficulties in the near future. I am an optimist by nature, but that future seems to me very dark. I do all I can to prevent it by foretelling it to everyone; but I only play the part of Cassandra. In the Council, M. Ferry and myself were the only ones who supported the _scrutin d’arrondissement_.

_July 9th_.–I did not think that the Tunis affair was concluded by the treaty of May 12th; that is the first stage if you like; but it was rather difficult. The difficulties which arise are very simple consequences; we will put down rebellion, but this will not incite us to conquest, which we do not want. The interests of the English, and those of other nations, would not suffer by our preponderance; and unless all the advantages of civilisation are ignored, it is certainly better to treat with the French than with the Moors. Europe will soon see [Footnote: Europe has seen; though not quite in the sense that St.-Hilaire wished to convey.] that our promises are not vain, and that we have only good intentions towards Tunis. We wish for nothing but the security of our great African colony.

The commercial negotiations have been transferred to Paris, at the request of the English Cabinet, which had at first expressed a wish that they should take place in London. This seems to me to imply the very opposite of a rupture, which, for our part, I can answer for it, we ardently desire to avoid. We only wish for an equitable treaty, and this I hope we shall manage….

Est-ce qu’on ne vous verra pas durant les vacances? Mistress Ross est passée par Paris il y a huit ou dix jours; elle est venue me voir un instant; elle m’a paru très bien portante. Bonne santé et bien des amitiés.

_July 22nd_.–I assure you that should any rupture take place between England and France, it will be very much in spite of all my efforts to preserve harmony between two great nations. The English alliance is, in my opinion, the right one for France; for many reasons, with which you are as familiar as myself, it is the one which should take precedence of all others. I do not by any means disdain other alliances, but the English is the first, the most important, and, I may add, the most natural. It was sincerely desired under Louis Philippe, in spite of a few passing clouds. Under Napoleon III. they were, in reality, strongly inclined to break it, notwithstanding the Crimean war. To-day we are anxious for an agreement with England, if both sides will consent to reciprocal concessions.

I am deeply grieved–surprised too–at the death of Dean Stanley. Sixty-two is too early to die, and nothing seemed to foretell his premature end. He passed through Paris, scarcely two months ago, and came to see me at the Ministère.

Like yourself, I should be happy to escape, but my chain is too short; and whilst I am minister I shall not go the length of a day’s journey away. We must be at the command of circumstances, since they are not at ours, and the shortest absence is enough to spoil many things. But I shall be happy on the day when I can break my bonds, and return to philosophy.

_July 27th_.–I hope that my answer to the Duc de Broglie the day before yesterday will convince England of the value I set upon our good intelligence, and of the open honesty of French policy. I hope, too, that my declarations may appease Italy and Turkey. I have done my best, and if I do not succeed it will not be my fault.

Our treaty of commerce is my chief source of anxiety, and for my part I am trying to avoid a rupture. But there are the resolutions of the two Chambers which cripple the negotiators and above all our minister of commerce. These are impassable limits to the best will. The negotiations will doubtless begin again in Paris, in about a fortnight, but it is not yet certain. The incident you point out is very curious, and England becoming Protectionist, and England becoming Protectionist again under Mr. Gladstone, would be an astonishing spectacle….

Je ne savais pas que l’île de Man fût ‘le royaume des chats sans queue.’

The Journal meantime notes:–

_June 3rd_.–To Foxholes: beautiful weather; 13th, back to town. More dinners.

_30th_.–To Drury Lane to see the German company act ‘Julius Caesar.’

_July 2nd_.–Dinner at Walpole’s to meet Archbishop Tait, Arthur Stanley, Lord Coleridge, Lord Eustace Cecil.

_6th_.–Arthur Stanley’s garden party at the Abbey. Lord Carnarvon’s dinner to the Antiquaries. [Footnote: Lord Carnarvon was president of the Society of Antiquaries, of which Reeve was, at this time, a vice-president.]

_July 13th_.–Breakfast of Philobiblon at Lord Crawford’s. Large garden party at Holland House. Great heat.

_16th_.–To Foxholes and back. 18th, Arthur Stanley died.

_July 23rd_.–From London to Government House, Isle of Man, on a visit to the Henry Lochs–eleven hours.

_25th_.–To Peel Castle with Loch and Coleridge; thence to Castletown. 27th, Ramsay.

_July 29th_.–To Barrow in Furness. Furness Abbey. [Thence to Scotland–Ormiston, Novar, Perth, Abington, &c.]

_August 24th_.–Back at Foxholes.

_From Archbishop Tait_

August 16th.

My dear Reeve,–It seems to me that a most important service might be done if a good article was published in the ‘Edinburgh’ on the pernicious periodical literature which spreads low Radicalism and second-hand scraps of infidelity amongst the labouring classes, both of town and country. My friend Mr. Benham lately gave a lecture at Birmingham on the literature of this or a kindred style, written for boys–‘Police News’ and the like. We do little for the people if we only educate them to read and rejoice in this trash. Ever yours,


The hint was not lost on Reeve, but it did not bear fruit till nearly six years later. In January 1887 the ‘Edinburgh Review’ contained a strong article on ‘The Literature of the Streets,’ in which the proposal was definitely made for the issue of wholesome fiction and good works of good writers, sensational and otherwise, in penny booklets. Eight or nine years later the idea was taken up by at least two publishers; such penny books are now issued by thousands, and, together with the countless number of halfpenny and penny periodicals, do something to mitigate the evil complained of by the Archbishop. The Journal notes:–

_September 9th_.–Picnic in New Forest with the Lochs and Clerkes. 30th, steamed round the Isle of Wight.

_To Lord Derby_

_Foxholes, October 6th_.–I must express to you the very great pleasure with which I have read your article [Footnote: ‘Ireland and the Land Act,’ in the _Nineteenth Century_ for October. It does not attempt to argue the question of Home Rule, but concludes with the pregnant words: ‘My present object will be sufficiently accomplished if I have indicated some of the difficulties which lie before us, and explained why–at least in my belief–it is premature to say, “Now we have settled our Irish troubles and may deal in peace with questions that concern England.”‘] on the Irish Land Act. It states in the most terse and telling language precisely the views I have entertained for the last two years; and the conclusions it suggests are even more striking than those it expresses. The ministers of England, be they who they may, have a difficult task before them. The odd thing is that our present ministers seem totally unconscious of the difficulty and the dangers. I am told that they view the state of Ireland with great complacency. It is astonishing how office blinds people’s eyes.

We have lost two members of The Club–Lord Hatherley and alas! Arthur Stanley. I hope you will be able to suggest somebody to replace them.

_From Lord Derby_

_October 8th_.–I am glad you liked the article in the ‘Nineteenth Century.’ I do believe it comes near to an accurate statement of the facts of the case–no one can hope for more than approximate accuracy in such matters–and on that account I expected it to be equally disagreeable to both sides. Its reception has been better than seemed probable. Gladstone has spoken out his mind about Parnell, and quite right too; but I wish he had not accused the unlucky loyalists in Ireland of being slack in their own defence. He does not know, evidently, how much they are overmatched…

As to The Club. Two names have occurred to me–one, Browning the poet, who is an excellent talker (I have heard him), and as unlike his books as possible; the other, Sir John Lubbock. What do you say?

The opening sentence of the next letter, from Lord Derby, appears to refer to an after-dinner speech made by Mr. Gladstone at Leeds, on the 7th, when he had alternately complimented Mr. Dillon and denounced Mr. Parnell. The latter part, the denunciation of Mr. Parnell and his faction, is unusually straightforward, and might profitably be studied in connection with some of Mr. Gladstone’s later speeches.

_October 11th_.–I don’t understand Gladstone’s phrase any better than you. Probably the explanation of it is that in Ireland it will be read as meaning fresh concession, in England as meaning coercion. For anybody who had leisure and disposition to take it up, I think a very interesting and useful article for the ‘Edinburgh Review’ might be made out of the present state of Irish literature and journalism. I do not believe the Irish lower and middle classes ever read an English book or newspaper, and their native literature is saturated throughout with the bitterest hatred to England and all that belongs to our side the water. We do not in the least know here the kind of mental food which is supplied to the amiable Celt. A good analysis of it would throw more light on the very old subject of why they hate us so.

Reeve adopted the suggestion, and the subject was discussed in an article on ‘Irish Discontent’ in the next number of the ‘Review.’ Lord Derby goes on:–

_October 15th_.–Since you wrote the Government has screwed up its courage to act. I never knew any proceedings so universally approved as the arrest of Parnell. [Footnote: Mr. Parnell, Mr. Dillon, Mr. Sexton, and the chief officials of the League were arrested in Dublin on the 13th and lodged in Kilmainham.] But we have not seen the end yet.

_October 21st_.–Many thanks for your letter, which is returned. I do believe that it would be of use, as making intelligible the present state of Irish feeling, to show to the English public (which is absolutely ignorant on the subject) what the kind of instruction is that the Irish peasant and farmer receives.

Another matter. What do you think of Matthew Arnold as a possible member of The Club? He is a good fellow and his literary reputation is very considerable. I think we could do with him if he would attend.

_From M. B. St.-Hilaire_

_November 22nd_.–You know how little value I set on my office; I only accepted it from a sense of duty, and quit it to-day, not only without regret but with great pleasure. I am glad to receive your congratulations because you correctly estimate the person to whom they are addressed.

Like yourself, I am not without anxiety for the future. In placing matters in the hands of M. Gambetta, I said all I possibly could on the affairs of Europe and our relations with Germany; but I will not swear that more attention will be paid to my advice than to that of many others.

The Journal has:–

_December 10th_.–To Timsbury; 13th to Foxholes. The Mintos were living at Bournemouth. Lunched with them on the 31st.

1882, _January 1st_.–At Foxholes. Sir A. Lyall came.

_9th_.–Returned to London. A few dinners.

_From Mr. E. Cheney_

_Badger Hall, January 19th_.–I have been reading the political articles in the last number of the ‘Edinburgh’ with great interest and pleasure. The one on ‘The Bonapartes,’ though not strictly political, amused me much, as at one time of my life I knew Hortense and Louis Bonaparte intimately. Hortense was an agreeable woman, very French, but lively and full of anecdote. She had been and was _très galante_, but with decency. When I knew her at Rome she was near fifty, and though not handsome, had still the appearance of once having been a desirable woman…. Her son was then with her–a youth of my own age, with whom I was intimate without liking him. He was cold, disagreeable, and full of pretension, silent and reserved in his own family, and anxious for distinction, which no one seemed willing to accord him. I believe–contrary to the usual opinion–that he was the son of Louis Bonaparte; he was like him. He was short, not ill-made, but ungraceful; his face was plain, his skin bad, complexion muddy; small pig’s eyes, a coarse nose and mouth, lank hair, with little expression, and what he had far from good. Neither I, nor any that then knew him, thought him at all clever. I remember he got into a ludicrous scrape by intruding, in female attire, into the apartments of the mistress of the Spanish ambassador, from whence he was kicked out with every circumstance of ignominy.

When the disturbances broke out in the Papal States, he took a part in them which was eminently unfitting, as he and his mother had found hospitality in the States of the Church which they were refused in every other country. I saw Hortense at night, just before her hurried departure from Rome, when the news of her son’s participation in the revolt at Ancona became public. I had always been well treated by her, and had tasted her hospitality both at Rome and at Arenenberg, and wished to show her sympathy and interest, though I had nothing else in my power…. She received a passport from Sir Hamilton Seymour and travelled through France. In Paris she had an interview with Louis Philippe, who was kind to her. In the days of her prosperity she had had an opportunity of showing kindness to the King’s mother. She showed me a letter from that princess, in which there were very ardent expressions of gratitude for the service rendered to her. This she told me she intended to show to L. Philippe as the certificate for her claims on his protection. I saw her in London several times during her stay; she returned to Switzerland, and I never saw her again.

Louis Bonaparte I only spoke to once afterwards. I happened to be at Cork when he landed there from America. I was at the same inn, and I understood he was in great distress for money. I asked to see him, and we met. I asked him if he required any trifling service that I could render him, thinking a five-pound note might take him to London. He thanked me, but said he was supplied for the moment. He lived with the D’Orsay and Blessington set, which I did not frequent. I did not call on him, and in Paris I never afterwards made the slightest effort to renew my former acquaintance with him….

I had intended saying something about the two other articles that relate to home politics, but I have been already too prolix. I must tell you, however, how much I like them. Whigs as well as Tories will soon cease to be separate; the struggle will soon be between those who have _culottes_ and those who have not. We have got already to the Girondist ministry–a party I hate particularly, in spite of their pretensions to virtue and philosophy, or perhaps in consequence of it. There are some men of birth and distinction who belong to the party; but the Levesons and the Cavendishes may soon find themselves stranded like the Narbonnes and Montmorencies amongst the Rolands and the Condorcets….

When are your new volumes to make their appearance? I long to have them as though I had not already read them.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_Rutland Gate, January 20th_.–I am uncommonly glad to hear from you again, and I have to thank you for a most interesting and amusing letter. My acquaintance with Louis Napoleon began when yours left off, and I saw a good deal of him in 1838 and 1839. He wanted me to translate his ‘Idées Napoléoniennes.’ But when he became a great man I dropped his acquaintance.

I am glad you like my tirade. I suspect my Whig friends do not; for the more one asserts Whig principles, the bitterer is the reflection on those who desert and betray them. I do not believe that the majority of the country or of the Liberal Party is Radical; but the danger is that a violent minority always overpowers an inert majority. I care nothing at all for any political persons, and but little for parties. It seems to me that the right and the wrong of government lies in the principles that regulate it, some of which are as certain as the truths of mathematics.

The ‘Greville Memoirs’ have rather slumbered of late, but I am gradually screwing up my courage to begin printing, slowly.

We are very well, and spent our Christmas pleasantly in Hampshire, the weather being delightful. London is dark and _un_delightful.

Then the Journal:–

_February 24th_.–Visit to the Markbys at Oxford. Vespers at New College. Dined at All Souls.

_28th_.–The Club. I was in the Chair. Mr. Gladstone attended; Lord Derby, Maine, Hewett, Tyndall, Coleridge. Matthew Arnold elected.

_March 23rd_.–Electrical Exhibition at Crystal Palace, with Dr. Mann.

_April 1st_.–To Foxholes. Very fine weather. No rain for three months.

_To Mr. T. Norton Longman_

_Foxholes, April 4th_.–I like the concluding pages by Froude in the Carlyle book, but I am disappointed in Mrs. Carlyle’s letters. They are pleasant and cheery, but there are thousands of women who write as well. As for Carlyle himself, he is _odious_–arrogance, vanity, self-conceit, ingratitude to old friends–I never thought I should dislike him so much. He seems to have looked at everything the wrong side outwards.

The Journal notes:–

_April 11th_.–Lunched with the Mintos. They drove me to Christchurch. Lady Minto died on the 21st.

_29th_.–A great salt hurricane that singed the trees all over the country, and also in France.

_May 5th_.–Saw Lord Frederick Cavendish before he started for Dublin. On the 6th he was murdered.

_From the Duke of Argyll_

_May 8th_.–You ask a difficult question about politics. On the one hand, I see no possibility of a Conservative Government being formed just now, nor do I believe that a Liberal Government could be formed on purely Whig lines. On the other hand, I have the deepest conviction of the mischievous tendencies of Gladstone’s leadership, and of the utter instability he is imparting to all the fundamental principles of government as hitherto understood in all civilised countries. I can only advise that the truth in this matter should be spoken freely, in the hope that when Gladstone disappears from the stage, there may be some return to sounder principles of legislation. I do not wish to see a change of Government just now. The Tories could not govern Ireland in its present condition; at least it would be a dangerous experiment. Half the Liberal party, which now supports coercion when it is forced on Gladstone, would undoubtedly oppose every possible form of it if proposed by Tories. The deplorable disaster made known to-day will have its effect. I hope it will force the Government to give form and substance to an amended Coercion Act–strengthening the ordinary law and widely extending the sphere of summary jurisdiction. If this be done well and sufficiently, it will be better than the power of arbitrary arrest. But before this event, I really feared that die Government might do nothing of the kind.

The Journal mentions:–

_May 20th_.–At Foxholes, till June 13th. Bought rowing boat.

_June 20th_.–Great dinner at The Club to the Duc d’Aumale. Nineteen present.

_21st_.–Great dinner at Archbishop Tait’s at Lambeth. Forty-three people. Evening service in Lambeth Chapel.

_22nd_.–Wagner’s ‘Meistersinger’ at Drury Lane.

_From Sir Henry Taylor_ [Footnote: A very old friend of Reeve’s. See _ante_, vol. i. p. 91.]

Bournemouth, June 22nd.

Dear Mr. Reeve,–Thanks for telling me what splendours I missed at The Club dinner. You ask what Dr. Johnson would have said if he had stepped in. As it was his own Club, he would have been gracious; but it was not every dinner that could please him. Do you remember his remark as he went away with Boswell from a dinner at one of the colleges at Oxford? ‘This merriment amongst parsons is mighty offensive.’

I always remember the singularly representative character of the only dinner I have had an opportunity of attending since I was elected. Literature and Learning represented by yourself, Dr. Dictionary Smith, Lecky and Lord Acton; the Church by the Archbishop of Canterbury and Dean Stanley; political life by Lord Derby and Spencer Walpole; the Law by Lord Romilly, and the Dukes by the Duke of Cleveland–and there was no one else. It was very pleasant, and there were not too many for conversation in common.

I always feel that, as I have not been in London for more than a day since that dinner, and am not likely to be there again, it is hardly right to occupy a place which might afford so much pleasure to some one else; but I have said this before, and your answer was that no one ever retired from The Club. As I am in my eighty-second year, I suppose it will not be long [Footnote: He lived four years longer, dying in 1886.] before Providence will place my seat at the disposal of some one who will turn it to more account. Believe me, yours sincerely,

Henry Taylor.

_From the Comte de Paris_

Château d’Eu, 22 juin.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–J’apprends par M. Gavard que vous avez l’intention de venir en France vers le 20 juillet. Je m’empresse de vous dire tout le plaisir que vous nous ferez, à la comtesse de Paris et à moi, en commençant ce voyage par un séjour au Château d’Eu. Je regrette seulement que vous ayez l’intention de l’entreprendre seul. J’ai fait ici, il y a trois semaines, de fort belles pêches à la truite, qui m’ont fait regretter que Mademoiselle Reeve ne fût pas ici. Vous trouverez chez nous le Duc d’Audiffret Pasquier, que vous avez déjà vu ici, je crois, il y a deux ans; et un général américain, qui a servi avec moi sous M’Clellan, M. de Trobriand.

Je ne vous parle pas de la situation de nos deux pays en Orient: elle est pénible, et il me semble que le dernier numéro du _Punch_ l’exprime avec une vérité parfaite.

Veuillez offrir mes hommages à Madame Reeve et me croire votre affectionné,


The Journal here notes:–

_July_.–The Egyptian Expedition was now resolved on. [Alexandria was bombarded on the 11th: the Army Reserves were called out on the 25th.] Lord Granville thought it would be finished before the end of August.

_16th_.–Crossed to Boulogne. Thence by Abbeville to Château d’Eu. Duc d’Audiffret, St. Marc Girardin, Duchesse de Montpensier. 21st, drive in the Great Park. Tréport. 24th, returned to London. 28th, to Foxholes: quiet life.

_To Mr. E. Cheney_

_Foxholes, October 20th_.–I am glad the article on Shelley [Footnote: ‘Shelley and Mary,’ _Edinburgh Review_, October 1882.] has interested you. The perusal of these private letters and correspondence has considerably altered and raised my estimate of Shelley as a man. As to his poetry, it produces on me exactly the effect of delicious music, which enchants the ear even when you can’t understand it. But these papers, which Lady Shelley has had printed in order to secure their preservation, are a sealed book. I believe she never can show them again to anyone–at least not at present. The copy she lent me has been returned to her and I do not possess it. Nobody else does. It is, therefore, impossible to ask her for a copy. I undertook to compile an article–as I did for Lady Dorchester, on her father–_omissis omittendis_. But that is all. I think the history of Allegra is in great part new, and one of the difficulties in this matter is the connexion existing between these papers and the papers of Lord Byron, which are unpublished.

Are you going to stay in London? I hope so. I shall return to town on November 6, and should be very glad to find you there.

And the Journal accordingly has:–

_November 6th_.–Returned to London.

_18th_.–The troops came back from Egypt.

_December 3rd_.–Archbishop of Canterbury (Tait) died.

_4th_.–The Law Courts opened.

_16th_.–To Foxholes till the end of the year. Gambetta died just as the year expired.

_To Lord Derby_

_Foxholes, December 23rd_.–The Club has lost one of its most respected members in the Archbishop, and all parties seem now to feel how great and wise a man he was. Huxley would be rather an odd successor to an archbishop; but I am inclined to think that he ought to be one of our next additions.

I am a very old and fervent supporter of the Anglo-French alliance, but in the present state of France I doubt whether anything is to be gained by making sacrifices to her pretensions. In justice to other States, such as Italy and Austria, I see no reason for conceding to France any exceptional position in Egypt, and I think all countries should be treated with equal justice and liberality. It is probable that a firm though friendly attitude towards the French will answer best for them and for us. Their expeditions to Congo, Tonkin, and Madagascar will do more harm to themselves than to anyone else; but they prove the weakness of the present French Government.

_From Lord Derby_

_Knowsley, December 25th_.–I agree in what you say about France, if you mean that the dual control is dead and cannot be revived; nor ought it, if it could. Other nations may fairly claim a voice in Egyptian affairs. What I lay stress upon is that we should make it clear that we are not going to take Egypt for ourselves; which nearly all foreigners suppose to be our intention, and give us credit for disguising it so well.

It is odd that the French are doing badly. The country is fairly prosperous, there is no war of classes, no apparent revolutionary feeling, yet distrust and doubt as to the future seem universal. It almost looks as if revolutions had driven the better sort of men out of public life. I cannot believe that their colonial craze will last long. There is, in all Europe, no country to which colonies are so entirely useless; for the French never emigrate and seldom even travel; and to send conscripts to tropical settlements cannot be popular with the peasantry.

As to The Club–I am quite in favour of Huxley’s admission; but have we only one vacancy? Would not any possible opposition to him be disarmed, if he were brought in, not singly, but as one of two or three? We must talk over candidates when we meet…. Poor old Owen cannot, in the course of nature, last long. [Footnote: He lived, however, for another ten years, dying at the age of eighty-eight in 1892.] Huxley would be his natural heir; more than the Archbishop’s.

_To Lord Derby_

_Foxholes, December 27th_.–To return to what you say of France. Do you not think that a democratic republic, in which every citizen is striving to get all he can for his vote at the expense of the State, necessarily becomes the most rapacious and corrupt form of government? It is this which has raised the budgets of France for 1883 to 122 millions sterling; and if you add the communal expense, to 154 millions. It is this which compels them to persist in a reckless expenditure, and to invent new modes of spending money and creating places by absurd expeditions abroad. The system there, as you say, drives every man of honour and honesty out of political life, and substitutes for them adventurers and idiots. The evil will become more intolerable still, and there will come another revolution, probably at first violent in form and ultimately put down by force. This is a melancholy forecast, but it is that of all the persons in France whose judgement is of value.

As to The Club–we had better not propose Huxley while Owen is amongst us. But we have several octogenarians–Overstone, Henry Taylor; and as for the lower grade of septuagenarians, they are numerous; but I will say nothing of them, as I shall shortly join that body. Altogether The Club presents a respectable array of years, and tends to longevity. I should like an engineer, if we could catch an agreeable one. What would you say to Sir Henry Loch? Few men have seen more of the world–in India, China, the Crimea, down to the Isle of Man; and I think him vastly agreeable. However, we can talk this over when we meet.



Many others besides Lord Derby were at this time speculating on the chances of one more revolution in France. The state of public opinion seemed to point to a coming weariness of the corruption incidental to a republic, and a desire for the restoration of the monarchy. Since the obstinate refusal of the Comte de Chambord, in 1873, to accept the change from the _drapeau blanc_ of the Bourbon dynasty to the flaunting _tricolor_ which savoured of democracy, monarchy had seemed impossible. But the Comte de Chambord was known to be in feeble health, and he had no children. If he should die, the fusion of the antagonistic parties was possible, was indeed probable; and it was generally understood that the Comte de Paris was singularly free from the prejudices which had rendered impossible a restoration in the person of his cousin. He was, indeed, not ambitious, and he was wealthy. The two ordinary motives of conspirators were wanting; but he loved France by force of sympathy and education, and he honestly believed that a restoration would be the best thing for his country. As a matter of love and duty he felt bound to work in order to bring about this most desirable of changes.

_From the Comte de Paris_

Chateau d’Eu, le 2 janvier 1883.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–Je suis bien touché de la bonne pensée que vous avez eue de m’écrire à l’occasion de la nouvelle année. Je vous remercie de tous vos bons voeux, et je vous prie de recevoir ici l’assurance de ceux que je forme pour vous et pour les vôtres.

I am greatly obliged by your remarks on the future of France. This is indeed dark; and, as you so well express it, the sterility of democracy and the impotence of the institutions based on it are most striking. They are especially so here. This dearth, this void, of which you speak increases from day to day. The men of note who were formed under a different rule, and who came to the front under special circumstances, are dying off and are not replaced. It is only a few days since one, [Footnote: Gambetta, died December 31st, 1882.] the most able we have had since the death of M. Thiers, has been carried off by an obscure–a mysterious–illness. Of those left, there is no one who can take his place. In some respects he was a truly remarkable man. He, and he alone, was known from one end of France to the other; he, and none but he, could even for one day have united the blind and jealous forces of democracy; he alone could give the republicans the organisation and appearance of a party, but owing to the violence of his temperament he could never have held the reins of government. He would have been exceedingly dangerous in the department of foreign affairs, which would have been his choice. He would, indeed, have brought to it a most honourable sentiment of the dignity of France, but he had neither prudence nor experience. There were in Europe some who counted on him; others who feared him; every one, I think, exaggerated what he would have done or tried to do.

I regret extremely the difficulties which are rising between France and England about Egypt, and I confess I do not understand the attitude of our Government. The temper of France towards England resembles that of a man who has been offered an equal share in a profitable adventure, who has refused to accept the risk, and who is now vexed at the success of his neighbour. But no Government worthy of the name will allow itself to be influenced by such feelings, or is unable to adapt itself to the changes which circumstances may give rise to. And besides, so little attention is paid in France to foreign politics that the Government may do whatever it likes, provided that does not lead to war–under any form or against any enemy….

J’ai bien regretté de ne pas pouvoir rencontrer Mlle. Reeve à Paris. Veuillez lui dire que si elle veut prendre quelques truites, elle devrait venir ici du 28 ou 29 mai au 5 ou 6 pin. C’est la date exacte de l’éclosion du May-fly, et à ce moment-là nous faisons vraiment de très belles pêches. En attendant nous partons pour Cannes la semaine prochaine. J’espère y rencontrer quelques amis d’Angleterre, dont plusieurs sont déjà fort anciens–comme Lord Cardwell, Sir C. Murray, Lord Clarence Paget, le Duc d’Argyll, &c.

Veuillez offrir mes hommages à Madame Reeve, et me croire.

Votre bien affectionné,


_From Lord Granville_

_Walmer Castle, January 7th_.–I return you, with many thanks, the Comte de Paris’ remarkable letter. If the Duc de Bordeaux would follow the example which has been sadly set by Gambetta and Chanzy, [Footnote: Chanzy had died two days before, January 5th. The Duc de Bordeaux better known at this time as the Comte de Chambord, did follow the example a few months later, August 24th.] the prospects at Eu would be good.

With you, I do not feel inclined to gush over Gambetta. It is true that he was well disposed towards England, but his love would have been of a troublesome and exacting character.

The Journal has little of interest. It notes the return to London on January 13th; a journey to York on the 29th, on a visit to the Archbishop [Thomson], who wrote an article for the ‘Review’ on the Ecclesiastical Commission; and, on February 17th, to Battle Abbey. Beyond these trivial entries, nothing except the mention of several dinner parties–some ‘good,’ some ‘dull.’ Then, later:–

_April 16th to May 22nd_.–At Foxholes. Very cold. Snow in May.

_June 8th_.–Dinner at Lord Carnarvon’s. Sir R. and Lady Wallace, Lord Salisbury, Lady Portsmouth.

_15th_.–Dinner at Alfred Morrison’s, [Footnote: Mr. Morrison, so well known to historical students by his splendid collection of MSS., died on December 22nd, 1897.] first time. Splendid house.

_21st_.–Dinner at home. Duc d’Aumale, Granvilles, Malmesburys, Carlingford, G. Trevelyans, and others.

_23rd_.–Philobiblon breakfast at Gibbs’s. Duc d’Aumale, Duke of Albany. To Military Tournament with Lady Malmesbury.

_25th_.–Duke of Cleveland’s dinner to Duc d’Aumale. Duke of Grafton, Lady Cork.

_From the Comte de Paris_

Château d’Eu, 16 juin.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–J’ai hâte de répondre à votre aimable lettre du 8, et de vous remercier de votre bienveillante appréciation d’un travail qui prend des proportions vraiment formidables. Je suis en effet en train d’imprimer le 7me volume, et d’écrire le 8me, qui sera suivi encore de deux autres, si Dieu me prête vie. Je suis obligé d’entrer dans beaucoup de détails pour donner à cette histoire un véritable intérêt aux yeux du public américain, qui est celui auquel je m’adresse particuliérement, le seul qui puisse me fournir beaucoup de lecteurs. La traduction anglaise en un gros volume a dû paraître ou paraîtra incessamment à Philadelphie.

Vous trouverez le Duc d’Aumale en fort bellé sante et très brillant, malgré toutes les préoccupations que nous avons eues, et la blessure très vive que lui a faite l’odieuse mesure militaire [Footnote: The removal of the Orleanist princes from the active list of the army in February.] dont il a été l’objet. Je regrette de ne pouvoir l’accompagner en Angleterre, où j’ai tant d’amis que je serais heureux de revoir. Mais ne puis-je au moins espérer que vous nous ferez cette année, avec Madame et Mademoiselle Reeve, une visite au Château d’Eu? Nous resterons ici tout le mois de Juillet. J’ai été assez heureux à la pêche ici dans notre petite rivéire. Pendant une quinzaine, du 25 mai au 10 juin, j’ai pris à la mouche 82 truites pesant 42 livres.

This was the sport to which he had particularly invited Miss Reeve in January, and which, he goes on to say, has given him the idea of going to Norway in August. As to this, he begs Reeve to make some inquiries for him, and concludes–Veuillez me croire votre bien affectionné,


Another chatty letter, four days later, June 20th, has:–

Nous serons charmés de vous voir venir ici vers le 24 juillet avec Madame Reeve, tout en regrettant que Mademoiselle votre fille ne puisse pas vous accompagner. Nous espérons qu’elle pourra venir ici l’année prochaine en mai. Mais qui peut faire sous un gouvernement démocratique des projets à si longue échéance?

The visit was, however, prevented by an event of the most serious political importance; an event which during the next three or four years was thought by many to be likely to change the destinies of France, to affect the fortunes of Europe. It may be best told in the words of the person most affected.

_From the Comte de Paris_

Château d’Eu, le 18 juillet.

Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,–Je suis revenu ici il y a deux jours après avoir fait en Autriche un voyage imprévu dont vous avez connu le motif et le résultat. J’ai été reçu par l’auguste malade [Footnote: The Comte de Chambord, known among the Legitimists as Henri V.] avec une affectueuse cordialité qui m’a profondément touché, et j’ai quitté Vienne en conservant quelque espoir de le voir sortir de la crise cruelle qu’il vient de traverser. Les dernières nouvelles reçues ne démentent pas cet espoir, quoique son état soit toujours fort grave et plein de périls. Je ne puis naturellement faire dans une pareille situation de projets à longue échéance. Non seulement tout plan de voyage est abandonné pour le moment, mais je vis au jour le jour, toujours prêt à partir au reçu d’une dépêche annonçant le dénouement fatal. Aussi ne puis-je dans ce moment insister pour vous engager à faire au Château d’Eu cette visite dont je me promettais tant de plaisir et d’intérêt, mais qui, dans les circonstances actuelles, risquerait fort d’être brusquement interrompue. Je le regrette vivement, et j’espère pouvoir m’en dédommager plus tard.

En attendant, j’ai hâte de vous remercier de tout ce que vous me dites sur ma situation actuelle et sur l’intérêt que vous y portez. Je vous remercie également de ce que vous avez écrit sur ce sujet à la fin du dernier numéro de la _Revue d’Edimbourg_. On sent en lisant ce morceau combien celui qui l’a écrit aime et connaît bien la France. Il a été fort remarqué chez nous. Si vous me permettez d’ajouter un seul mot qui vous prouvera que je l’ai lu avec attention, je vous signalerai un _lapsus calami_ qui vous a échappé. Le fondateur de notre branche d’Orléans, fils de Louis XIII, frère de Louis XIV, s’appelait Philippe et non Gaston. Gaston était le nom du fils de Henri IV, frère de Louis XIII, le Duc d’Orléans de la Fronde, qui ne laissa que des filles, entre autres Mlle. de Montpensier.